Everyone loves a Mini Meatloaf Muffin: the individual portion, the convenient size, that amiable shape that somehow turns ground meat into a treat. These ones take the cake, as hidden in the centre is a chutney, sweet, spicy and tart, that gives the meatloaf a pop of flavour. Don’t tell them – let them discover it on their own!
Mini Meatloaf Muffins with Baked-In Chutney
As any Paleo cook knows, sometimes you have to put in a little more elbow grease than usual so as to be able to relax later. Such is the nature of batch cooking and preparation. Last Friday, for me, was one of those days where I worked overtime because I wanted to have the weekend off. I mopped all the floors, I did the shopping, and I baked: Venice was calling. One of my favourite places in the world, this extraordinary city is just one and a half hours away, and I don’t go there often enough. So I’ve decided to make a cultural date with myself, buy a Museum Pass which lasts 6 months, and head down there once a month to see something fabulous and lose myself in the alleys and streets. On this occasion, however, I went down with the sole intention of walking with Roxy, idling a little in the Piazza San Marco, with maybe a spot of shopping.
I took a packed lunch. Partly for the excursion, but also to celebrate the end of our September Whole 30, I baked my wonderful Paleo Apple Cake (which really makes The General’s heart sing!), and these Mini Meatloaf Muffins with Baked-In Chutney. I filled them with my Quick and Easy Apple Chutney which I’d made the day before. Another nice filling is Pear and Prune Chutney, one of my exclusive recipes in The AIP Instant Pot Cookbook.
Along with a generous mixed salad, my lunchbox didn’t take up too much space in my bag, and because it was wrapped, it was tidy and easy to eat whilst sitting on a park bench. I was happy I’d gone to the effort. Having my own wholesome lunch meant I could still indulge in a few tasty Venetian morsels – which I did – but without breaking the budget and certainly without the temptation of falling face-first into inflammation-inciting foods. I had one mini muffin for lunch, one when I got home, tired and happy in the evening, and then on Sunday night we reheated the last four and ate them for dinner. Easy, tasty, fun. And with that dollop of chutney in the middle, which really transforms them from a simple meatball into a savoury treat.
On the Side
Rosemary, Fennel and Garlic All Day Beef Burgers – Wonderfully flavoured, these are another one of my favourites for a packed lunch.
Basil and Chicken Meatballs, Paleo, AIP – Lovely, fragrant burgers for when you want to have a break from beef.
Quick and Easy Apple Chutney, Paleo, AIP – A tart, sweet and spicy condiment that whips up in a flash.
- 500 grams / 1 pound ground beef
- 10 cm leek
- 1 thin celery stick
- 1 medium carrot
- 1 sprig rosemary
- 1 small bunch parsley
- 1 small clove garlic
- 1½ teaspoons iodised marine sea salt
- ½ cup Easy Fresh Apple Chutney (link in post)
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Lightly oil 6 silicon ½ cup capacity muffin moulds,
- Roughly chop the leek and celery. Peel and roughly chop the carrot. Pull the leaves from the rosemary stalk and remove the stems from the parsley. Squash the garlic and remove the papery skin,
- Put the leek, celery, carrot, rosemary, parsley garlic and salt into the food processor and process until finely chopped.
- Add the ground beef and process again until all the vegetables are thoroughly mixed through.
- Fill the muffin moulds with the meat to ⅔ full. Using your thumb, make an indent in the centre one third of the way down and press the meat up the sides a little. Fill the cavity with chutney, then mound more meat on the top, pressing down around the edges.
- Place the filled muffin moulds in a baking tray, and bake for 45 minutes.
- When cooked, remove the baking tray from the oven, taking care as the muffin moulds will be filled with the cooking liquids. Let the mini meatloaves cool just until you are able to handle them, and pour the liquids away. Allow to cool completely on a plate, or place each one in a paper muffin liner.
What are your go-to recipes for a packed lunch? Let me know in the comments, and if you happen to make these Mini Meatloaf Muffins, take a snap and tag me on Instagram @paleomantic. Come find me also on Facebook and Twitter, and check out my Pintrest boards where you’re sure to find something to inspire.
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